Rome was our last stop in Italy after Bologna. We dropped our bags at the hostel and set out to explore on foot!
Rome is such a great historical city. Ryan and I would wander the small side streets then turn a corner and catch our first glimpse of the Colloseum off in the distance.
We only had a day in Rome, so we didn’t have long to explore.
The Colonna Traiana, a Roman triumphal column in Trajan’s Forum.
The magnificent Altare della Patria, the National Monument to Vittorio Emanuele II, the first king of unified Italy. The last time I visited, in 2010, it was covered with scaffolding and tarps and I couldn’t get a nice picture.
The plaque at the Largo di Torre Argentina, which points out the location where it is believed Julius Caesar was assassinated – how fitting to post this at the ides of March!
Julius Caesar is said to have been assassinated where the above pine tree is located.
Ryan and I flitted from sight to sight, hitting the major Roman landmarks along a very walkable route. Here, we arrived at the Piazza Navona, one of my favourite squares. Due to the direction of the sun, all the patio chairs in the shade were full, and all the others on the other side of the piazza, in the sun, were empty. Rome in August is very hot!
Next up we got to the Pantheon. When Tomiko and I were here in 2008, all the tourists respected the signs to not use any cellphones.
These days, however, with everyone glued to their smartphones, the signs were totally unheeded.
Then we headed to the Trevi Fountain, and it was the busiest I had ever seen it! When my family first visited in 2001 or so, it was early springtime so there weren’t so many tourists, and I could get close enough to the fountain to throw in a coin over my shoulder. When I visited again in 2008 and 2010, it still wasn’t as busy as it was on this day in 2016! The previous three times I had had a massive gelato cone from a gelateria on one corner of the square, but this time it seems the gelateria was gone (or was replaced with another one).
After briefly viewing the Spanish Steps, which were closed for maintenance, we continued up to the Piazza del Popolo.
Ryan and I slowly made our way back towards the hostel. We stopped nearby at Ristorante Al Viminale, which was on a quiet street with very little foot traffic. When we sat down at an outside table, only one other couple was eating. When we left, however, the whole restaurant was full! I had a rich and tasty lasagna, and Ryan had the canneloni. We shared a tuna salad and Ryan had a glass of good red wine. After I had a latte, we returned to the hostel to shower and pack; we would be heading back to Toronto in the morning.